**** RCMP Media Release
RCMP and Department of Seniors acknowledge World Elder Abuse Awareness Day
Tomorrow, June 15, is World Elder Abuse Awareness Day. To raise awareness about this important topic, the Nova Scotia RCMP and the Nova Scotia Department of Seniors are sharing information and tips to help protect your loved ones.
According to the Nova Scotia Department of Seniors, it’s estimated that 1 in 6 older adults worldwide experience elder abuse, often by someone they know and trust. Elder abuse can take many forms such as physical, financial or emotional. Cases can often go unreported as seniors may not recognize what they’re experiencing as abuse.
There are several signs that someone may be being abused or neglected, including:
- Shows signs of depression or anxiety;
- Seems fearful around certain people;
- Becomes socially withdrawn (less contact with people who they have been close to in the past);
- Becomes passive and very compliant;
- Has unexplained physical injuries (i.e. bruises, broken bones);
- Lacks food, clothing and other necessities;
- Shows changes in their hygiene or nutrition (e.g. signs of malnutrition);
- Suddenly becomes unable to meet financial obligations; and
- Has an unusual withdrawal from their bank or other financial institutions.
The RCMP regularly partners with local Senior Safety Coordinators to host education sessions about elder abuse. Later today, Kings District RCMP is hosting a senior’s appreciation BBQ from 11:30-1:00 p.m. at Centennial Park in Berwick, and the Hants County Senior Safety Association will be at the Avon Community Farmer’s Market in Windsor from 10:00-2:00 p.m.
The Nova Scotia Department of Seniors is committed to supporting older adults in the province. Their SHIFT action plan helps to support aging so that older Nova Scotians can stay connected to their communities longer. “One of the important actions in the SHIFT plan is our Senior Safety Program,” said Seniors Minister Leo Glavine. “This community-based program aims to address safety concerns of older Nova Scotians by providing education and awareness on elder abuse prevention, crime prevention, and safety and health issues.”
The department currently supports 16 Senior Safety programs in the province to direct and deliver services in homes and work collaboratively with community partners, including police, by providing information, educational sessions and referral services. For more information and to access the full plan, visit www.novascotia.ca/shift.
If you know someone who may be a victim of elder abuse, contact your local police or RCMP. For additional information, please visit www.seniors.gc.ca, www.gov.ns.ca/seniors or phone the Nova Scotia Senior Abuse Information Line at 1-877-833-3377.